Adult day care is a great idea. But…
Is it right for you? Is it ready for you? As a relatively new approach to senior care, there’s a wide range of services falling under the label of adult day care. Centers may be private or publicly funded, nonprofit or for-profit, and can be independent businesses or affiliated with medical or community centers.
Take some time to recharge, refresh, and de-stress.
Adult day care centers can do both of you a world of good. These centers offer programs that provide a high level of care and offer safe, stimulating activities and companionship in a comfortable setting. Both the care consumer and their care providers get a break: elderly patients are dropped off to enjoy some socialization, recreation and a welcome change of scenery. Meanwhile, caregivers get precious time to work, shop, relax, look after their other family obligations, or just get away from it all and tend to their own mental health.
Choosing the provider that’s right for you
Some states license and regulate this industry, while others do not. It’s always a good idea to visit the centers nearest you—unannounced—to get a feel for the atmosphere the center provides. Do the clients look happy and alert? Is the staff actively engaged in activities and interactions with them? Then ask detailed questions to make sure they can provide the level of care you need, and check with your friends and health providers for their recommendations. Read online reviews carefully and screen them for credibility, allowing for the inevitable insider-placed and/or sponsored/paid reviews, as well as negative reports from disgruntled or upset reviewers that don’t actually reflect realistic expectations on their part.
Keep them on their toes
It’s always a good idea to visit your loved ones unannounced during the day to see that everything meets your expectations. Watch for any changes in health, alertness or enthusiasm your loved ones may show, since this may point to serious underlying issues. Be vigilant and share your concerns with senior staff—clients that are being watched by loved ones get better care.
Paying for adult day care
Costs may vary widely, with the highest levels of medical care naturally costing a good deal more. A recent survey of costs showed a range between $25 to $100 a day depending on services, region, and reimbursement or funding available. Medicare doesn’t usually cover adult day care, but other federal or state programs, including Medicaid and veterans’ programs can often help with the costs.
Medical Flex Savings Accounts and Health Savings Accounts—which set aside pre-tax dollars to be used for these purposes—can also significantly reduce the financial burden. In any case, it’s comparable to or less expensive than visiting nursing or institutional care, so it’s worth looking into these options.
For more information:
For help connecting to your local aging information and assistance provider or Area Agency on Aging (AAA), call the Eldercare Locator at 1-800-677-1116 or visit https://eldercare.acl.gov.
General information about adult day care centers, programs, and associations is available through The National Adult Day Services Association. Call 1-877-745-1440 or visit http://www.nadsa.org.
Bottom line: Adult day care can be a significant part of your senior health care plan, and make life more enjoyable for the care consumer and provider alike. Find out more today to see if it’s a good fit for your family.
Contact us today for more information.